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What is asthma?
inflammation in your airways that leads to symptoms.
Asthma is a chronic disease that causes the airways
Inhaled corticosteroids (e.g., Flovent, Pulmiocort, Q-var)
(bronchioles) of the lungs to swell and narrow. Increased mucus
are the primary component of long-term control, either as
production and inflammation of the lining of the airway reduces
separate medications or in combination with long-acting
the amount of air that can pass by leading to an asthma “attack”
bronchodilators. These steroids are generally prescribed
for daily use to keep asthma under control on a day-to-day
basis and make it less likely an asthma episode will occur.
Leukotriene Receptor Antagonists (LTRA) (e.g., Singulair)
People with asthma have sensitive airways that react to certain
can be prescribed in addition to inhaled corticosteroids
triggers causing wheezing, shortness of breath, chest tightness,
to help prevent asthma symptoms by blocking a reaction
and/or coughing. Triggers vary by individual, but typically
before it starts. This helps to boost the effect of the
Exercise (though not a trigger you should completely avoid)
Combination medications contain both an inhaled long-
Viral infections (colds, bronchitis, pneumonia)
acting bronchodilator (LABA) and corticosteroid (e.g., Symbicort, Advair). This treatment encourages widening
of airways while reducing and preventing inflammation at
Allergens (such as cats, dogs, mites, roaches, mice, mold,
the same time. This combination approach is used when a
person’s asthma has not been adequately controlled with
inhaled corticosteroids and albuterol.
Oral corticosteroids (e.g., prednisone, methylprednisolone) reduce the swelling in the airways and may be used during
Your asthma may change over time. If you experience
symptoms and require quick-relief medicine more than two
Though asthma can’t be cured, symptoms can be controlled.
days each week, or if your symptoms are interfering with
Your health care providers can work with you to develop a
normal daily activity, your asthma is NOT under control. Meet
treatment plan to help control your symptoms. When your
with your health care provider as often as needed to discuss
your symptoms and treatment adjustments.
Sleep through the night without a cough or wheeze
Severe asthma attacks can be life-threatening. Go to a
hospital’s emergency room or call 911
immediately if you
experience any of the following signs:
Bluish color to the lips, tongue, or tips of fingers
Decreased level of alertness, such as severe drowsiness or
Treatment plans are customized to the individual, and typically
include one or more medications. The right medications for
you depend on a number of things, including your age, symptoms, asthma triggers, and what seems to work best to
Severe anxiety due to shortness of breath
keep your asthma under control. The major types of asthma
Quick-relief “rescue” inhalers, such as albuterol (e.g.,
Ventolin, Proventil) are bronchodilators that act to quickly
open swollen airways that are limiting breathing. They are
used as needed for rapid, short-term symptom relief during an asthma episode (or before exercise if recommended by
One Minute Asthma (www.pedipress.com/book_oma.html)
Have questions about asthma? Call your primary care provider.
Long-term “controller” medications reduce the
Students: call Gannett at 607 255-5155.
JOURNAL OF WOMEN’S HEALTHVolume 21, Number 6, 2012ª Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. DOI: 10.1089/jwh.2011.3116Persistence with Oral Contraceptive Pills Versus MetforminNicole W. Karjane, M.D.,1 Kai I. Cheang, PharmD., M.S.,2Gabriela A. Mandolesi, M.D.,3 and Dale W. Stovall, M.D.4Objective: We studied patient persistence with oral contraceptive pills (OCPs) compared to metformin fortreatment of polyc
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